Nylon dance costume
  • How do I get a nylon white dance costume dyed a nice vibrant autumn color--such as orange, yellow, etc... ? I just tried a packet of Dylon Sunflower Yellow with some white vinegar in the salt water and stirred and stirred on the stovetop, but the yellow did not adhere to anything except the lining. The tag says 80% nylon, 20% metallic. We can forget the metallic now, since it pretty much went down the drain in the form of silver glitter.
  • After doing some additional internet reading, I'm thinking Dye-Na-Flo is the best approach for getting the autumn color on the nylon dance costume. I'm going to order the Golden Yellow. Do you have any thoughts or suggestions for adhering leaves from a garlard (silk-like) to the costume?
  • Although Dylon Permanent dye and Dylon Machine Dye contain fiber reactive dyes, they also contain a pH-increasing chemical that will completely neutralize your vinegar, and therefore will not work with nylon. In order to use fiber reactive dyes as acid dyes on nylon, you must have a low pH, obtained by using vinegar or another acid in the absence of soda ash or TSP. That means that the only fiber reactive dyes you can use on nylon are those which do not contain dye auxiliaries already mixed in. You can use Procion MX dyes in this way on nylon, including Dylon Cold Water Dye, but not other Dylon dyes.

    The best dyes for use on nylon are acid dyes, including Jacquard Acid Dyes and other brands of acid dye. They are used by simmering the nylon in the dye with vinegar or another acid.

    Fabric paints such as Dye-na-Flow will give good results on nylon, but I think acid dyes would be better. True dyes last longer than fabric paints, because they soak through the fiber, and, unlike fabric paints, dyes leave no feel on the fabric at all. Dye-na-flow can give excellent results, but it will produce a pigment-dyed effect, not a single smooth solid color.

  • Paula: Thanks for the information. The DyeNaFlo has arrived, and I'm going to give it a try. I'm still not really sure HOW best to apply it to the dance costume. Any suggestions? The instructions on the bottle were not very instructive.
  • It turned out well with the DyeNaFlo. What an interesting product.